Dazzling blue: color symbolism, kabbalistic myth, and the evil eye in Judaism

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The color blue is thought to protect against the evil eye in Mediterranean cultures. This article unfolds the yet-unstudied role played by kabbalistic theology, symbolism, and myth in the construction of the color blue as a protective color for Jews. It traces particularly the development of a medieval kabbalistic myth of a dazzling blue garment of the feminine aspect of the godhead, protecting her from contact with evil forces. The article shows how this myth became the foundation for various practices against the evil eye among Jews in the modern period and contextualizes this myth within theories about the evil eye.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)183-208
Number of pages26
JournalNumen
Volume64
Issue number2-3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2017

Keywords

  • Judaism
  • Kabbalah
  • blue
  • color symbolism
  • evil eye
  • magic
  • myth
  • ritual

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Religious studies
  • History

RAMBI publications

  • rambi
  • Blue
  • Cabala
  • Evil eye
  • Evil eye in rabbinical literature
  • Symbolism of colors

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